UK households face billion pound energy bill with Eastern England hardest hit

Recently announced price increases have ranged from 1 to 10 per cent and MoneySuperMarket said that this means that affected households will be paying £97 more a year on average

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The Independent Online

EDF Energy’s latest round of price increases, combined with recent hikes from its biggest rivals, could cost British households as much as £1.2bn collectively, according to new research.

An analysis MoneySupermarket reveals that households on standard variable tariffs in the East of England will pay a total of £1,263 on average a year after the latest round of price increases, which is higher than any other area in the UK.

Recently announced price increases from the Big Six suppliers have ranged from 1 to 10 per cent and MoneySuperMarket said that this means that affected households will be paying £97 more a year on average for the same amount of energy.

Of all the suppliers, npower has announced the biggest increase, at 10 per cent, and almost a quarter of households on Big Six tariffs in the east of England are currently with that supplier.

MoneySuperMarket said that a third of households in that area are with Scottish Power, which has announced a price increase of eight per cent.

British Gas has so far bucked the trend by saying that it will keep standard variable tariffs frozen until August.

“The message is loud and clear for the millions of people hit by Big Six price rises: shop around if you’re on a standard variable tariff, or if you’re on a fixed deal that’s coming to an end,” said Stephen Murray, energy expert at MoneySuperMarket.

EDF on Wednesday said that its standard variable dual fuel direct debit tariff will increase by 7.2 per cent from 21 June, while its standard variable gas tariff will increase by 5.5 per cent, and its standard electricity tariff will increase by 9 per cent.

EDF in December already announced a price rise that came into effect in March, sparking fresh criticism from consumer groups and money saving experts.

In March, Theresa May vowed to crack down on spiralling energy prices saying that "the market is not working as it should".

The Prime Minister said that prices had soared by 158 per cent over the last 15 years, with the poorest hit by the highest tariffs. But she has not spelled out how she planned to keep prices capped.

“The energy market is manifestly not working and the Government needs to step in to protect the vast majority of consumers who find themselves on these standard tariffs," John Penrose MP commented on EDF's move on Wednesday. 

MoneySuperMarket’s data shows that while the East of England faces the highest total bill, the Norrth West is set to be hit by the greatest increase – an average of £101.85 per year.

MoneySuperMarket is one of the UK’s largest price comparison websites.